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Match Reports

Match Report: Walsall 2-2 Port Vale

22 February 2020

Walsall came from behind twice to earn a point in a pulsating match against Port Vale at the Banks’s Stadium.

The visitors opened the scoring through Leon Legge before Elijah Adebayo levelled for the Saddlers.

John Askey’s side regained the lead through Scott Burgess late in the first half before Josh Gordon restored parity early in the second half as Walsall stretched their unbeaten run to four.

Darrell Clarke made four changes to the side that started against Northampton Town.

Rory Holden, Danny Guthrie and Wes McDonald came in from the start while there was also a rare start for Jack Rose.

After a lively start from both teams, it was the Valiants who opened the scoring when a short corner was played to Dave Worrall whose cross was met by Legge who powered in a header at the far post.

The Saddlers responded well to falling behind and levelled just three minutes later when Rory Holden’s shot was parried away by Scott Brown into the path of Adebayo who stabbed the ball home to draw the hosts level.

The game settled down after that and both sides struggled to gain control.

It was the visitors who dealt the next blow as they restored their lead nine minutes before the break when Burgess’ shot took a big deflection and wrong-footed Rose as it crept into the back of the net and the Valiants went into the break in front.

Walsall made a bright start to the second half. Gordon and Holden both had great chances as the Saddlers pressed for an equaliser.

They got their reward on 58 minutes when Adebayo’s cross was met by Gordon who took a touch and applied the finish from close range.

Clarke’s men had their tales up and thought they lead for the first time in the match when Holden played a delicious ball down the line to Gordon who got a cross in early to Adebayo. The striker thought he got his second of the game with his first-time effort but Scott Brown somehow recovered to get a hand to it to deny the striker.

The Saddlers kept on coming forward and came close again when McDonald dragged a low shot just wide on 72 minutes.

Vale introduced Tom Pope which gave them more of a foothold. They put the Saddlers under pressure in the final 10 minutes and came close through Worrall whose arrowed shot was brilliantly saved by Rose who got down low to get his legs to it.

In the end, both sides had to settle for a share of the spoils.

 Rose; Facey, Scarr, Sadler, Pring; Holden, Guthrie, Kinsella, McDonald; Gordon, Adebayo
Subs: Roberts, Clarke, Sinclair, Bates, Nolan, Sheron, Lavery.


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